Prep Time:30 minutes |
Cook Time:1 hour
I wore a uniform when I went to high school and never got over the habit. The adult version is that I buy a new shirt (or hat or sweater) then wear it all the time and can’t remember a time when I didn’t wear it.
This recipe is the same thing: once I adapted (aka stole) the idea from bonappetit.com, I can’t remember a time when it wasn’t making it. I’ve prepared this for cooking classes, lunches with friends, vegetarians coming to dinner, meatless Mondays. I ate it for lunch by myself as soon as I took the photograph.
It’s a dish of contrasts, crispy and creamy, tart and rich, raw and cooked. It’s simple to make but tastes complex. It’s a whole meal on one plate (or platter). The parts can be made in advance and assembled at the last minute. It’s customizable. Change up the herbs, using cilantro or basil in place of the dill or mint, or use all of them. Change the type of olive. Use red onions, not green. It works on any occasion, dressy or casual. Sort of like the perfect outfit. Or in my case, the perfect uniform.
12 small Yukon gold or red potatoes
extra-virgin olive oil
1 can (15 oz) chickpeas or garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
1-1/4 cups whole milk Greek yogurt
2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill
2 to 3 lemons, preferably Meyer
1 basket cherry tomatoes, cut in half
3 Persian cucumbers, sliced, or 1 regular cucumber, peeled and diced
2 green onions, thinly sliced
1/3 cup pitted kalamata or castelvetrano olives, halved
2 oz crumbled feta cheese
torn fresh mint leaves for garnish
Preheat oven to 425°. Put potatoes in a medium pot with water to cover and season generously with salt. Bring to a boil, with the lid on. Reduce heat to medium and simmer, covered, until a knife slides easily into center of a potato, 12 to 15 minutes. Drain potatoes and transfer to a bowl; drizzle with 2 tablespoons olive oil and a hefty pinch of salt and toss until coated. Spread potatoes on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Set aside to cool for a few minutes. Meanwhile, in the same bowl you used to oil the potatoes, mix the chickpeas with another tablespoon of olive oil and salt to taste.
With the bottom of a coffee mug, push down on each potato on the baking sheet to smash it; you don’t want to squash it, just splay it open. Sprinkle the oiled chickpeas around the potatoes. Bake until potatoes are crispy on the edges and chickpeas are firm, 35 to 40 minutes.
Meanwhile, in a bowl, stir together the yogurt, chopped dill, juice of 1 lemon, and salt to taste. In another small bowl, toss the tomatoes, cucumbers, onions, and olives with the juice of another lemon, 1/3 cup olive oil, and salt to taste (you are essentially making a salad). Taste and adjust for salt, more lemon juice, and/or oil.
(At this point, you can refrigerate salad and yogurt mixture in separate containers, and the potatoes with chickpeas on their baking sheet, for up to 1 day. Remove from refrigerator 30 minutes before serving. Reheat the potatoes and chickpeas in a 375° oven until warmed through, about 15 minutes.)
To serve, with the back of a spoon, spread the yogurt sauce on the bottom of a platter or individual plates. Top with roasted potatoes and chickpeas. Spoon tomato salad over potatoes and drizzle with any juices remaining in bowl. Top with feta and mint leaves and serve.